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West Divide Trail #289, AZ

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Guide 4 Triplogs  1 Topic
Rated  Favorite Wish List AZ > Tucson > Safford
3 of 5 by 1
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Difficulty 5 of 5
Distance One Way 24 miles
Trailhead Elevation 4,269 feet
Elevation Gain 2,702 feet
Accumulated Gain 6,837 feet
Kokopelli Seeds 46.78
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28  2015-10-11
Powers Divide S.Field Loop
29  2015-10-09
Powers Garden
15  2015-03-28
Rattlesnake Trail #285
Author HAZ_Hikebot
author avatar Guides 16,882
Routes 16,052
Photos 24
Trips 1 map ( 6 miles )
Age 22 Male Gender
Location TrailDEX, HAZ
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Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   Sep, May, Aug, Jul
Sun  6:09am - 6:18pm
Official Route
2 Alternative
Flora Nearby
Named place Nearby
Culture Nearby

Likely In-Season!
The Galiuro Mountains grace the southeast Arizona landscape as a pair of ridges split by a north/south canyon complex.

Two main ridges enclose this canyon duet made up of Rattlesnake Canyon flowing north and Redfield Canyon flowing south.

Though the West Divide Trail is named for the westernmost of these two ridges, the trail actually starts in one of the canyons. The only point on the West Divide Trail accessible by vehicle is at Jackson Cabin at the southern Forest boundary of the Galiuros in a side drainage off Redfield Canyon. The trail follows this drainage to the main canyon and then winds upstream for several miles through the stacked block pinnacles and steep rocky bluffs that make this gorge one of the most spectacular in the Southwest.

West Divide Trail eventually leaves Redfield Canyon and winds across the high rolling country that separates it from Rattlesnake Canyon. Along the way, it passes the old mine and cabin where the pioneer Power family was involved in a shootout that became part of the mythos of the wild west. The trail then ascends Grassy Ridge where the views are big, bold and unobstructed. To the east, north and south, the major peaks of the Galiuro Range are visible, including Kennedy, Kielberg, Bassett and Biscuit. To the west, the Santa Catalina Mountains north of Tucson stand massive and tall, rising abruptly from the broad, flat San Pedro Valley. Within that valley lies the copper mining town of San Manuel, home of one of the largest open pit copper mines in the world. The trail ends at Maverick Peak, one of the higher points in the Galiuros and one of the major features in the visual smorgasbord you’ll be enjoying as you trek across the ridgetops.

Check out the Official Route and Triplogs.

This is a difficult hike. It would be insane to attempt this entire hike without prior experience hiking.

Leave No Trace and +Add a Triplog after your hike to support this local community.

2012-03-14 HAZ_Hikebot

    One-Way Notice
    This hike is listed as One-Way.

    When hiking several trails on a single "hike", log it with a generic name that describes the hike. Then link the trails traveled, check out the example.
    WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.

    Most recent Triplog Review
    West Divide Trail #289
    rating optionrating optionrated 3rated 3rated 3
    Powers Divide S.Field Loop
    Day hike loop from Powers Garden to the shootout cabin and mine, with the return trip along the West Divide Trail.

    Powers 96 was in fine shape, especially upstream of Corral canyon which was the source of a recent flood. South of Corral, there is no sign at all of the 2014 Oak Fire down in the valley. Once reaching the saddle and the Divide trail junction the trail down to the cabin is overgrown with catclaw. I'd say this trail should be cleared, but I suspect the FS is perfectly happy making it a pain to get to. And I'm actually ok with that. It's neat to see the cabin, having only scraped the surface of the history there. I'll have to watch Powers War again now that I've been there. I'm sure some of it will make more sense now.

    We took a lunch break there and continued down the road to the mine where I was quick to voice my disapproval of the lack OSHA safety protocols in place. :o

    On the way back, FOTG, LP, and Steady headed their own way while Karl and Pat and I decided to take the ridge back.

    Like the other trails we hiked in the Galiuros, West Divide 289 is overgrown and involves some good bushwhacking, but isn't really too tough. The views were great, and a nice breeze kept the warm and largely shadeless route quite pleasant.

    When we arrived at the first option to drop back to the garden, we opted to continue. The first trail is signed as Field Canyon 294, but I believe it is actually called Tent Lookout 294.

    From this junction north on West Divide 289 we encountered the nicest trail conditions of the weekend. The ACC trail crew had been clearing this section and it was an absolute dream :y: . Almost too good to be true! --And soon enough, in fact, too good to be true! We reached the end of where the trail had been cleared, and we were faced with about a mile of the worst trail of the weekend. The only good thing is there was no manzanita and no catclaw, but it was otherwise a linebacker's worth of pushing through trees, bushes, and branches. Crawling was a regular part of getting through. ](*,)

    Finally we reached the junction with the trail that drops into South Field Canyon. The Divide Trail north of this point was clear again, as was the trail that we followed downhill. Despite the flowing water all over the east side of the Galiuros, we were surprised that this canyon was bone dry. Nonetheless, it was a scenic canyon and a pleasant hike. The trail deteriorated and fell into what seems to be a common state for trails out here ... overgrown.

    One short climb up a ridge brought us to the junction of the lower end of the signed Field Canyon 294 trail that we had bypassed up top earlier. Before heading back to camp we decided to check out the Powers Spring area, which was an amazing narrows of rocks and flowing water.

    This was a great day hike loop from the garden. It'll be great once the final northern section of the Divide trail is cleared.

    Permit $$
    no fees or permits reported

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    Coronado Forest
    MVUMs are rarely necessary to review unless mentioned in the description or directions
    Coronado Motor Vehicle Use Maps (MVUMs)

    Map Drive

    To hike
    From the Muleshoe Ranch (Hookers Hot Springs on the Forest Service map), take Forest Road 691 north 13.5 miles to just before Jackson cabin. This is a rough, 4-wheel drive road. From the north, access may be gained by the Powers Garden Trail #96.
    page created by joebartels on Mar 14 2012 12:00 am
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